Archive for Wednesday, May 26, 2004

N.W. Missouri, Kansas shaken by tornadoes

Monday night’s twisters strike mostly rural areas

May 26, 2004


Tornadoes that hit northern and eastern Kansas and northwest Missouri and blew some houses off their foundations, tore up several businesses and damaged a hospital.

But there were no reports of any deaths from Monday night's storms.

The National Weather Service had reports of possible tornadoes in Republic, Washington, Wabaunsee, Shawnee and Osage counties in northern and eastern Kansas, and in Livingston, Gentry, Holt, Nodaway, Harrison, Linn, Worth and Macon counties in northwest Missouri.

Many of those tornadoes touched down in rural areas, including farmland, causing little damage.

In the Topeka area, storms damaged two businesses.

"We saw a funnel cloud, and we saw it touch down a few times," said Scott Bayless, who lives in Shawnee County.

Propane gas was leaking from one of the businesses and power lines were down, Shawnee County Sheriff's Officer Jay Boyles said, causing officials to block traffic in the area until it was deemed safe.

A number of tornadoes touched down in Republic County in northern Kansas, the Sheriff's Department said, but there were no reports of injuries and the only damage came from golf-ball-sized hail that broke car windows in Belleville.

"Three or four of them came in from Nebraska into the northern part of the county," dispatcher Joe Herrick said, "but they were all over open farm area."

In Gentry County, Mo., Robert Crockett, the emergency management coordinator, said the twister damaged his house, along with almost every business along the stretch of U.S. Highway 136 that runs through Albany.

"The east part of town took a big lick," Crockett said.

The roof of Northwest Medical Center in Albany was damaged, but no one in the hospital was hurt. The hospital was running on auxiliary power and lost water service, so its 10 patients were evacuated to other hospitals.

"The amount of the damage is going to be significant," said hospital spokesman Chuck Davis.

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